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 Post subject: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Sat Dec 25, 2010 6:09 am 
First Gear
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:18 am
Posts: 215
Location: Oakville Connecticut
OK, so I have been chasing a problem with my car lately. The car is a 1994 Subaru Legacy 5 speed.

Lately, sometimes the car will start and sometimes it just cranks. If the car is warm at all, even the slightest bit, it will start right up. But if it is a true cold start, then it is a shot in the dark.

I switched out coolant temp sensors with a known working one, still same problem.

I diagnosed that I was not getting any spark. I checked for power and all grounds throughout the entire starting system. (Igniter, Coil, etc..)

I have a brand new ignition relay, and a brand new starter, swapped out batteries, everything.

Tonight, on my way home from a family get together, go to start my car and nothing, just cranking.

Luckily they live on a hill so I attempted to pop start it and voila, car started up just fine.

Now the only difference between pop starting and regular cranking would be that:
A) Pop starting essentially uses the wheels/transmission to spin the flywheel and crank and get everything going.
B) Regular cranking uses a starter which spins the flywheel and crank.

I have done some searching, and I understand that sometimes a starter can draw enough power away from the system to prevent spark. I just want some of your opinions before I go spending money and chasing gremlins that aren't there. The starter is brand new from the parts store, replaced about 5 months ago.

Is it my starter or something else?

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy Sedan 5 Speed FWD Green (EG33 swap in progress)
1984 Subaru BRAT Tan
1995 Subaru Legacy Wagon
2004 Forester XT


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2010 7:28 am 
In Neutral
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 7:16 am
Posts: 9
I have a simular problem with my 1992 legacy wagon auto trans awd, let me start by saying that.. I got this car cheap and had to pull the engine and go thorugh it, replaced all the gaskets, laped the valves in, so everything was cleaned/inspected it had a t-belt faliure and had compression issues.. but on to my current problem.. I live in colorado and lately it has been getting colder and whne the tem drops into the 20's ish it just cranks and cranks and does not start until I clear flood it by feathering the gas. I changed out the coolant temp sensor thought that fixed it but no dice, when I do get it strted it is deffently flooded due the the raw fuel I can smell out the exhaust.. I have seen some other fixes on here most of them are coolant temp sensors, one is pull a fuse (what one) and let it sit over night, clean and re-fit the coil wires on the coil pack.. anyone have any ideas I am planing a trip in 2 weeks in the mountians and I need to know it is not going to be a problem.. thanks in advance everyone ohh yeah and I have a new battery installed new plugs, fairly new wires (ngk) and like I said all new gaskets from subaru..


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Mon Dec 27, 2010 3:57 am 
First Gear
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:18 am
Posts: 215
Location: Oakville Connecticut
I have gone through everything with the starting system on the car.

- All sensors are getting power.
- All sensors are properly grounded.
- All sensor circuits are closed between connector and ECU.
- Battery has a good charge.

- When it does not start using the starter, I can get it started by pop-starting it, so the only difference between the two would be that one uses a starter and the other spins the engine via the wheels. It has to be the starter, like it is taking enough power away from the system to prevent spark. But my starter is brand new, only about 1,000 miles on it.

I wouldn't mind pop-starting it every time it wouldn't start for me, but the problem is, most of the places I go are not located on a hill + it is beginning to snow so pushing a car won't be very easy.

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy Sedan 5 Speed FWD Green (EG33 swap in progress)
1984 Subaru BRAT Tan
1995 Subaru Legacy Wagon
2004 Forester XT


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Mon Dec 27, 2010 2:38 pm 
In Neutral
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 7:16 am
Posts: 9
Just tryed to start my car this am and it is 18 out feels like 11 and no dice would not start turns over but no dice..?!? did ecu re-set producture yesterday and checked the wire-to coil fit all ok


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Mon Dec 27, 2010 4:18 pm 
Fifth Gear
Joined: Mon Oct 16, 2006 9:44 pm
Posts: 3249
Location: Toronto,ON Canada
same issue here i think its my ignition relay do you hear something clicking under the dash ? Im going to try hitting the relay than if Thats a no go ill swap the igniter than coil.

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy L AWD Wagon R.I.P
1994 Subaru Legacy SS R.I.P :(
2004 Nissan Titan LE 4X4
2007 Subaru Legacy GT :)


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Mon Dec 27, 2010 7:27 pm 
In Neutral
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 7:16 am
Posts: 9
I think I may have the answer to my problem.... checked codes had code 13 in there (cam sensor) checked on identifix and found that the cam sensor will fail and cause no spark when cold I am going to get a new one and I will report back after I install a new one!


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2010 1:02 am 
In Neutral
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 7:16 am
Posts: 9
Just got back from the junk yard picked up 2 cam sensors.. tommrow morning is the test to see if she starts..


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2010 4:43 am 
In Neutral
Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2010 4:33 am
Posts: 1
Location: Reno, NV
I have been having the same problem for the last three months too. Is the code 13 the only one its throwing?


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2010 7:16 am 
Fifth Gear
Joined: Mon Oct 16, 2006 9:44 pm
Posts: 3249
Location: Toronto,ON Canada
I have a update got home. Tried to start it nothing. Only codes again was the purge solenoid. I went under the dash hit the brown square ignition relay and bam started instantly!

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy L AWD Wagon R.I.P
1994 Subaru Legacy SS R.I.P :(
2004 Nissan Titan LE 4X4
2007 Subaru Legacy GT :)


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2010 3:32 pm 
In Neutral
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 7:16 am
Posts: 9
Yes code 13 is the only one I got out of it.. this am it was 23 out and started right up.. I am so happy at the end of this week here it is planned to be in the single digits we will see if it can handle that.. do you need the part nunber for that relay? I saw a something on that with part numbers..


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2010 4:42 pm 
Fifth Gear
Joined: Mon Oct 16, 2006 9:44 pm
Posts: 3249
Location: Toronto,ON Canada
Ya that would be great thanks otherwise ill just have my dealer find it.

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy L AWD Wagon R.I.P
1994 Subaru Legacy SS R.I.P :(
2004 Nissan Titan LE 4X4
2007 Subaru Legacy GT :)


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2010 3:01 pm 
First Gear
Joined: Sat May 03, 2008 6:24 pm
Posts: 165
Location: Alaska
Yes yes yes, part number please. Where exactly is it located? A pic would be great, email text me it doesn't matter. I will be sooooooo happy when this is fixed.


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 6:10 am 
In Neutral
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 7:16 am
Posts: 9
1990 - 1992 Subaru Legacy 2.2L



Symptom: No start. Hard start and/or rough idle for a short time after first start cold. MIL stays on when idling rough. Codes 24 and 35.



System: Emissions/PCM/Fuel



Codes: 24, 35



Problem: The ignition relay has poor or intermittent contacts.



Test & Fix: At the Yellow select monitor connector, find the Yellow/Red wire. Monitor this wire for voltage when the condition occurs. It should be powered any time the relay is energized. The relay is energized any time the key is in the run position. Remove and inspect the relay for the updated part number. The relay can be found on a bracket about 8" above the foot rest on the far left of the foot well. It is Brown with 6 pins. The original part number is 25229AA000. The updated relays part number is 25229AA001. The part number of just the updated relay without the bracket is 25232AA028.

I think that should do ya.. not too sure if it is what you need or not..


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 3:42 pm 
First Gear
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:18 am
Posts: 215
Location: Oakville Connecticut
I've replaced this relay with no luck still. I'm leaning towards the starter because I have replaced coolant temp sensor, ignition relay, and battery. After it starts up it runs like a champ. I can drive it for 3 hours with no problems, it's just the initial cold start that can be tricky sometimes.

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy Sedan 5 Speed FWD Green (EG33 swap in progress)
1984 Subaru BRAT Tan
1995 Subaru Legacy Wagon
2004 Forester XT


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 9:26 pm 
Fifth Gear
Joined: Mon Oct 16, 2006 9:44 pm
Posts: 3249
Location: Toronto,ON Canada
Wait your saying it doesn't crank at all sometimes?! Most likely the contacts on the starter than!

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy L AWD Wagon R.I.P
1994 Subaru Legacy SS R.I.P :(
2004 Nissan Titan LE 4X4
2007 Subaru Legacy GT :)


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2010 12:08 am 
In Neutral
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 7:16 am
Posts: 9
starter contacts then most likely..


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2010 7:17 am 
First Gear
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:18 am
Posts: 215
Location: Oakville Connecticut
ughhhhh :x . It cranks everytime no problem. It cranks everytime I turn the key. The flywheel is being spun by the starter everytime, but sometimes I fail to get spark. All of my ignition components check out good, they are all getting power and are grounded. It just seems like the starter is draining the power the car needs to spark.

When the car CRANKS, but does not start, I am able to pop-start it to get it running. The only difference between the two methods of starting would be 1 method uses a starter, and the other uses the wheels/transmission. The wheels and transmission need no electrical power to start, just a slightly inclined hill or a nice push.

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy Sedan 5 Speed FWD Green (EG33 swap in progress)
1984 Subaru BRAT Tan
1995 Subaru Legacy Wagon
2004 Forester XT


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Sat Jan 01, 2011 7:25 am 
Fifth Gear
Joined: Mon Oct 16, 2006 9:44 pm
Posts: 3249
Location: Toronto,ON Canada
so now it sounds like a grounding issue.

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy L AWD Wagon R.I.P
1994 Subaru Legacy SS R.I.P :(
2004 Nissan Titan LE 4X4
2007 Subaru Legacy GT :)


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Sat Jan 01, 2011 7:55 pm 
In Neutral
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 7:16 am
Posts: 9
GRR it was very cold this am single digits and the legacy would not start up.. I did get it started and before with the old cam sensor it would not start up.. but I did use my remote start so I think in the future I will just start it with the key when it gets this cold I will check it tommrow am..


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Sun Jan 02, 2011 10:35 pm 
First Gear
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:18 am
Posts: 215
Location: Oakville Connecticut
I think I just made a breakthrough. After testing all of my ignition components, except for the ignition switch out of the key lock cylinder thing, I have found a snag.

Using my Haynes book, I tested for continuity between certain terminals at certain selections (OFF, ACC, ON and START)

The same terminal that receives continuity during "ON" was receiving intermittent continuity when turned to "START".

So, when turned to "START" continuity existed between the "starter" terminal, but not the "ignition" terminal, disabling spark when cranked, but allowing for spark when simply turned to "ON" as my pop-start test concluded, and allowing the starter motor to crank the engine.

The lock cylinder itself is pretty loose, and I thought to myself, maybe the lock cylinder grounds itself to the steering column. When I jiggled it around, I would receive needed continuity sometimes, and sometimes not. I am going to tighten up my lock cylinder and hope it works. If that doesn't work I'll replace the ignition switch and go from there.

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy Sedan 5 Speed FWD Green (EG33 swap in progress)
1984 Subaru BRAT Tan
1995 Subaru Legacy Wagon
2004 Forester XT


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Sun Jan 02, 2011 10:41 pm 
Site Admin
Site Admin
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2002 11:37 am
Posts: 25525
Location: Houston, Tx
I would suggest just replacing the lock cylinder. You may be able to limp it by a little bit by tightening the lock cylinder, but it sounds worn and will likely give you problems in the future.

_________________
Josh

surrealmirage.com/subaru
1990 Legacy (AWD, 6MT, & EJ22T Swap)
1997 Impreza OBS

If you need to get a hold of me please email me rather then pm


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2011 2:47 am 
First Gear
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:18 am
Posts: 215
Location: Oakville Connecticut
Yeah, I'm definitely having trouble getting the locking cylinder out. There are 2 shear bolts on the top, and I don't know who's bright idea it was to make this difficult to service, but it cannot be unscrewed or unbolted. I can turn it with a screwdriver, but I really don't understand why they would make it like this.

Also, could an faulty ignition switch cause this problem?? Unable to start it sometimes, but once it is running, it never stalls. Also when it doesn't start, it is able to be pop-started. I really would like to know before I go spending money on stuff I don't need. I am going to do a voltage drop test on my battery while cranking tomorrow and see what happens. I've seen that the ignition switch could cause no cranking and stalling, but in my case it cranks with no spark, and once it does get running it is good to go. Also if the engine is the slightest bit warm, it will start right up.


I did get some shaky resistance readings when checking the ignition switch. Sometimes it would take like 10 seconds for the continuity to finally kick in, sometimes there wouldn't be any continuity at all, and other times the continuity was instant.

I am at a loss here. All of my ignition components check out good. Coolant temp sensor has been replaced. Ignition relay has been replaced. Fuses have been checked.

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy Sedan 5 Speed FWD Green (EG33 swap in progress)
1984 Subaru BRAT Tan
1995 Subaru Legacy Wagon
2004 Forester XT


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2011 5:46 pm 
First Gear
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:18 am
Posts: 215
Location: Oakville Connecticut
Okay, I just got back from the Subaru dealer and described my problem to them.

The tech told me that one of the parts guy who has the same year legacy has the same problem, and it is a pretty common problem for 1993-1994 Legacys. I guess it doesn't happen to the older Legacies with the different body style. So I asked him how he deals with it. He says that:
- Cold starts are a shot in the dark, it either starts or it doesn't on a cold start. He says that he cranked it so much one time, the cylinders filled up with so much fuel that it locked up.
- If it is even the slightest bit warm, it will start right up.
- He said that he went through everything and tested absolutely everything from the ECU to the sensors, all sensors were replaced, all grounds checked, basically everything tested out in working order.
- He says he hooks his legacy to a block heater and he drives it everyday like that. It is just the initial start that is the problem.
- He said that nobody has yet to figure out the problem, they just end up having to deal with it.

I usually get out late at night from work and sometimes it won't start so it has to be a true true cold start to have the problem.

So I put some thought into it, and I am going to invest into a block heater. I was also thinking of a way around this cold start problem and came up with the following:
- ECU reads coolant temperature via the coolant temp sensor.
- The coolant temp sensor is a thermistor, as the coolant becomes colder, the resistance to the ECU increases.
As I have said, the car can be the slightest bit warm and it will start up so I thought:
- Splice a toggle switch or a relay into the coolant temp sensor to lower the resistance sent to the ECU, so the ECU thinks the coolant is warmer than it is, and it will start up, because the car starts if the engine is the tiniest bit warm. Ofcourse using a toggle or a relay, once the engine starts up, switch it off so the ECU gets the correct resistance so the car could warm up properly and idle properly once warmed, and so the cooling fans will operate at the correct temperature.

Any input on this would be great.

I guess the new body style effed up cold starts :P

_________________
1993 Subaru Legacy Sedan 5 Speed FWD Green (EG33 swap in progress)
1984 Subaru BRAT Tan
1995 Subaru Legacy Wagon
2004 Forester XT


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2011 7:49 pm 
Site Admin
Site Admin
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2002 11:37 am
Posts: 25525
Location: Houston, Tx
Dude.....you found the problem, you said it yourself. I don't buy the whole heated block routine. You proved it above. Whether the engine itself turns over and fires has absolutely no bearing on engine temperature. Push starting gets the engine rolling and it starts.

The problem is electrical! Just so you can reread what you posted above, I've copied and pasted it below. It sure sounds electrical to me. The key lock has no bearing on the ignition switch. It just turns the ignition switch. Take a look at this diagram:

http://main.experiencetherave.com/subar ... k_diag.pdf

Try unscrewing the wiring part (#12) from the lock mechanism. Or just unplug the ignition switch from the main connector, and jumper the appropriate pins with some heavy duty wire, and wire up a push button starter to test starting the car when cold. If it starts, you definitely found your problem. If you'd like, I'll make you a quick wiring diagram indicating what wires to jump.


Jessekrs123 wrote:
The same terminal that receives continuity during "ON" was receiving intermittent continuity when turned to "START".

So, when turned to "START" continuity existed between the "starter" terminal, but not the "ignition" terminal, disabling spark when cranked, but allowing for spark when simply turned to "ON" as my pop-start test concluded, and allowing the starter motor to crank the engine.

The lock cylinder itself is pretty loose, and I thought to myself, maybe the lock cylinder grounds itself to the steering column. When I jiggled it around, I would receive needed continuity sometimes, and sometimes not. I am going to tighten up my lock cylinder and hope it works. If that doesn't work I'll replace the ignition switch and go from there.

_________________
Josh

surrealmirage.com/subaru
1990 Legacy (AWD, 6MT, & EJ22T Swap)
1997 Impreza OBS

If you need to get a hold of me please email me rather then pm


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 Post subject: Re: Starting Problem
PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:09 am 
Fourth Gear
Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 8:17 am
Posts: 2068
Location: Spokane, WA
sorry I don't really have time to read all of the posts, but hace you checked/replaced your starter solenoid contacts? Had an issue with that awhile back and it was back to normal once those were replaced.


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